Work is the refuge of people who have nothing better to do. : Oscar Wilde

Friday, April 15, 2011

Trending Occupation Category

Bruce Gillespie (@bgillesp) who is a "journalism professor at Wilfrid Laurier University and arts enthusiast" tweeted this job ad for the Toronto Symphony Orchestra: Digital Marketing Coordinator.

The person that the TSO hires will need the skills required to process masses of electronic communications, to produce the textual, visual and audio components of web pages and other digital materials, and to embed some of these components into the TSO's content management system. However, the clear emphasis in the ad is on using other skills in marketing, co-ordination, co-operation, scheduling and so on to meet the TSO's objectives. The technical stuff supports the people skills.

I think that this category of occupations requires people who can use computers to manipulate a wide variety of media and communications channels (without necessarily creating original work) and, at the same time, work in close association with other personnel that are directly pursuing an organisation's interests. Again, by including that last part of the description I want to exclude the kinds of people who tend to prefer to work in separate departments, away from the 'front line.' Although the production of appealing original works of art, music and literature is still beyond the majority of us, with or without the help of computers, many of us can now manipulate them with acceptable results. The consequence is that, employers can now put the primary emphasis on interaction skills, and also ask for computer skills.

Incidentally, the technical skills are sometimes lumped together and called transliteracy. (I'm grateful to Susan Buckingham of Niagara West Employment & Learning Resource Centres for making me aware of this term.)